MADISON, Ala. (WHNT) - Sci-Quest Hands-on Science Center made a big announcement Friday morning. They’re moving to Madison.
Sci-Quest is currently located on the campus of Calhoun Community College. The new location isn’t very far from its current home on Wynn Drive.
Sci-Quest is moving about eight miles to 9076 Madison Boulevard in the Madison Village Shopping Center, adjacent to Old Time Pottery. This new facility is easily accessible from Interstate 565 at the Wall Triana Exit.
For months, the Sci-Quest Board of Directors evaluated real estate options and searched for the best location. By moving to Madison, the board has a vision to broaden the center’s reach and capabilities to become one of the premier learning institutions for science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
“We are tremendously grateful to Calhoun Community College and the city of Huntsville for their hospitality and support over the years,” said Board President Randy Lycans. “We are excited by the possibilities that this move presents for us to take our visitor experience and educational outreach efforts to the next level. We look forward to a long and rewarding partnership with the city of Madison, the city of Huntsville and the entire Tennessee Valley region.”
Sci-Quest has been on the campus of Calhoun Community College in Huntsville for the past 13 years. Lycans says it's been a great partnership, but it was time for both the college and Sci-Quest to expand.
"Unfortunately, where we are is kind of tucked away and it's difficult to get to," explains Lycans. "You really can't see Sci-Quest from I-565. The new property we're moving to is much more visible."
Sci-Quest Executive Director Cyndy Morgan says there were a lot of factors in the decision to move from Huntsville to Madison, like price, visibility, and parking.
"We were looking for the best location in the Huntsville metro area where we could serve the most people and do the best job reaching them," said Morgan.
The move also marks the kick-off to a multi-million dollar capital campaign to develop Sci-Quest into a state-of-the-art science center that will be a regional attraction. Madison city leaders welcomed Sci-Quest with open arms.
"I think Madison is ready, willing and able to wrap our arms around that capital campaign and support them on multiple levels," says Madison Mayor Paul Finley.
Finley says this move fits right in with the city's growth plan.
"This is a perfect example of investing a little bit of money," says Finely."With a destination spot there, what will happen is others will follow."
The hope is that Sci-Quest's relocation will be the key to revilitazing the area.
"It is bringing an attraction to Madison that we've never had before," says Madison Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Susie Masotti. "Madison is such a family-oriented community. This is a perfect fit for Sci-Quest."
The new facility is 36,000 square feet and will be renovated. The goal is to complete the move by February of 2013.